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Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
#319052 08/19/10 01:44 AM
Joined: Jan 2004
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shareholder in the making
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Hello Axiom Family!

*note before I get started - I have already received Ian's approval on this post for those that may question me*

I wanted to run something by all of you to see if it might be something you would be interested in for your home theater, bar, garage, home, etc. In the past many of us have been interested in signs/plaques or other wall items to dress up our home theater and/or homes, so I hope you will like this product.

I'd like to introduce you to Virtual Stone!

This little business idea is a venture between me and a good friend of mine, Matt. Right now it is something on the side to make a little extra cash, but we are hoping some day it might expand. It all started when I helped him with some other projects months ago, and he wanted to do something special for me as a thank you. We both love Audio/Video and home theater, so he decided to make be a special wall sign.

Below is the sign he built for me. I absolutely think it is "killer" and will look awesome once I complete my remodeling of the PorterPlex (sump pump failure).

The signs are all currently hand made by using a foam material, hot wire tool, templates, and painted with two different steps to produce a product that appears to be carved out of stone and very heavy.

The THX sign below is about 2ft wide and maybe 1-1.5 ft tall, and maybe 2-3+ inches thick all togethor. It really has a cool 3D affect, and the lighting in the room provides interesting shadows within the piece.

Although custom signs like Axiom Audio, family named HT signs, custom acoustic panels (my idea), etc., come to mind, the possibilies don't stop there. Below is a short list of some of the other items he has done:

Harley Davidson signs
Bar/Rec Room signs
Cullen Family Crests (lots of detail taking 15+hrs time)
Theater sign at a local cinema.
Decorative leaves for a living/family room.
...just to name a few

We are even trying to look into something that would hold up in exterior environments in case we receive such requests.

Anyway, I wanted to see what you all think and I will try to answer any questions you may have. We are thinking a piece similar to the THX one below would run in the neighborhood of $45-60. Pricing would depend on how many characters, complexity of how the letters flow togethor, font, etc. Pretty much any color would be available as well. Larger pieces than the dimensions above and pieces with a lot more complexity would cost more and take longer to complete.

I would imagine that people could sumbit to us a drawing or draft of what they are thinking to receive a quote. Eventually, if this thing takes off, I'm sure we can come up with standard pricing for basic items, and quotes for more detailed requests. Since there is only 2 of us we are estimating a 2-3 wk delivery time for now, but if business picks up that might increase to 4-6 wks or so, I am guessing. Our goal is to be able to afford a professional Foam Cutting cnc type machine which we've already been researching...

*One question for JohnK and other legal folk. I do have a concern about requests for THX, Dolby, Natural Lite smile , etc. type signs. Don't even think about Monster. smile I already have Ian's blessing from Axiom, but am a little concerned about legal issues. As Alan said Tomlinson Holman (THX creator) might like one of these above his head board...lol








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Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
SirQuack #319054 08/19/10 01:50 AM
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I'm not a legal person, but I can tell you that companies don't like other people profiting from use of their registered trademarks.

Lucas would be the last company I'd mess with. Motorola is paying them for the use of the name "Droid" on their phones.


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Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
ClubNeon #319057 08/19/10 02:07 AM
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I'd have to say you're trying to cut-your-own-throat at that price point. This is a luxury item, you need to add an extra digit to that price ($199'ish). Especially for custom work.


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Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
Scamp #319059 08/19/10 02:13 AM
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shareholder in the making
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Actually it is funny you say that Scamp. Recenty, we showed some works to some people that attend Des Moines, Iowa's yearly Art Festival. This Festival is huge and takes up much of downtown. People and famous Artists of all types come from all over the world. Anyway, they were saying some of the Cullen Family Crests would easily sell for $200-300 at the show, but they do take 15-20hrs to complete each piece.

I hope to have some pictures of some of the other works asap. I will talk to Matt about the price as he was the one that is always trying to help people out and do something nice. Sometimes he forgets what he puts into his own time. He is a good Christian friend of mine and to him it is all about helping others, as it should be. wink


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Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
Scamp #319060 08/19/10 02:14 AM
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IMO I would cease and desist selling your product with any word, logo, symbol, name that has intellectual property associated with it which is not yours. THX, Harley Davidson etc. Don't assume Monster is the only company out there that does get litigation happy.


I’m armed and I’m drinking. You don’t want to listen to advice from me, amigo.

-Max Payne
Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
BlueJays1 #319062 08/19/10 02:18 AM
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shareholder in the making
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It was just a joke about Monster, if you've been around this forum long enough, you'll know where that came from... smile

Yes, I'm pretty much aware of the possible outcome of using a name like THX, Lucas, Dolby, etc. without permission, and would not go there without such approval or royalties acceptance from them. But I do have connections... smile


M80s VP180 4xM22ow 4xM3ic EP600 2xEP350
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Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
SirQuack #319064 08/19/10 02:30 AM
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sirquack,

I like your idea, and the work looks great.
But.......I can assure you it would be better to do non-trade marked words, and images.
You can't afford to fight the big guys........remember: the big fish always eats the little fish.


LIFE: "Choices, balance, and timing"

(Larryism)
Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
LT61 #319068 08/19/10 02:48 AM
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Additionally, the way trademark law works, the owner of said mark must fight. There's such a thing as trademark dilution. If the owner of a trademark doesn't defend it, they lose legal claim to it.

That's not to say the marks can't be licensed for use. That's why you see things like, "Dolby Digital, and the Double D logo are trademarks of Dolby Labs, used with permission."


Pioneer PDP-5020FD, Marantz SR6011
Axiom M5HP, VP160HP, QS8
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-Chris
Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
ClubNeon #319075 08/19/10 03:14 AM
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There's always a bigger fish.

Re: Virtual Stone custom signs...fyi
SirQuack #319076 08/19/10 03:22 AM
Joined: Jul 2010
Posts: 84
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Originally Posted By: sirquack
Actually it is funny you say that Scamp. Recenty, we showed some works to some people that attend Des Moines, Iowa's yearly Art Festival. This Festival is huge and takes up much of downtown. People and famous Artists of all types come from all over the world. Anyway, they were saying some of the Cullen Family Crests would easily sell for $200-300 at the show, but they do take 15-20hrs to complete each piece.


Of course I still want mine for $60.... smile

I have the perfect spot for one, now I just have to think of what to put on it...


M22's x 3, QS8's x 4
SVS PC12-Plus, Denon 3311ci
Ear-to-ear grin? Priceless!
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